This saved time lets you spend more time out of the kitchen and with the people you love.
It generally follows that the better the food, the longer your host has to slave over the stove (or you have to slave if you are the one hosting).
Some people love the process of crafting a meal, but there is no replacing the time we spend with family and friends.
Thankfully, we have the solution — Pressure cooker.
We have scoured the furthest reaches of the internet finding all the information you need to make an informed choice on a good pressure cooker.
There are many things to think about before you make your purchase, but our guide will help you through the process. We also have a list of the best pressure cookers for you to choose from.
As always, we recommend you to read our buyer’s guide to have a more in-depth understanding of what you should be looking for before you dive into our list of the top rated electric pressure cooker in 2018.
Top Rated Electric Pressure Cooker in 2018
|Pressure Cooker||Best For||Price|
|Cuisinart Electric Pressure Cooker (Editor’s Pick)||Best for Browning and Sautéing||Price|
|Chefman Electric Pressure Cooker (Editor’s Pick)||Best for Cooking Rice||Price|
|Homeleader Pressure Cooker (Editor’s Pick)||Best for Steaming||Price|
|Gtime Electric Pressure Cooker||Best for Sous Vide||Price|
|Housmile Electric Pressure Cooker||Best for Home Cooking||Price|
|Nattork Electric Pressure Cooker||Best for Families||Price|
|Presto Pressure Cooker||Best for Simple Cooking||Price|
|Vonshef Multi-Function Pressure Cooker||Best for Soups and Stews||Price|
|Maxi-Matic Pressure Cooker||Best for Commercial Cooking||Price|
|NutriChef Pressure Cooker||Best for Healthy Food||Price|
1. Cuisinart Electric Pressure Cooker — Best for Browning and Sautéing
This is a certified refurbished product which means you get a professional-grade pressure cooker without having to pay through the roof for it.
The product does have all of the original accessories, but, as it is a refurbished product, it only has a 90-day warranty.
This is a tradeoff for the price; you are not paying a lot of money for this pressure cooker, but there is a chance that the product could need repairs after the warranty has expired.
The product has been tested and certified by Cuisinart so you can be assured that the product will be working at peak performance. The appliance will come to you looking and working like a new pressure cooker would.
This is a 6-quart pressure cooker which is enough to cook a main meal for the average family. It also reduces cooking times by up to 70%. We love how fast this pressure cooker can get a meal to the table. The other thing we like is the cooking functions. This pressure cooker will allow you to brown or sauté your food before you then pressure cook it.
You can also simmer your food and keep it warm when it is done cooking. The digital controls are also straightforward and intuitive to use. You can quickly get a meal to the table without having to decipher complicated controls.
You also have a timer included so that you can cook your food perfectly each time. At a touch of a button, you can quickly cook any meal and have it turn off when the food is cooked. You can also set the pressure cooker so that it keeps your food warm once it has cooked.
When you are done cooking, all of the inserts and inside pot are entirely dishwasher safe. No hassle with cooking, and no trouble with the cleanup.
This is a great pressure cooker for a family. You can easily cook up a meal with no fuss, and then clean up with no hassle.
- Easy to use
- Dishwasher safe
- 90-day warranty
2. Chefman Electric Pressure Cooker — Best for Cooking Rice
This multi-cooker from Chefman is a 9-in-1 tool for your kitchen which will replace many of your regular appliances. You can, of course, use this pressure cooker as a pressure cooker, but you can also use it for so much more.
It can be used as a slow cooker, rice cooker, food steamer, browning pan, soup maker, and lots more. The built-in programs make it easy to create your favorite soups, stews, sauces, and, the best part, in our opinion, rice. This pressure cooker makes perfect rice every time.
The timer on this pressure cooker makes it easy to cook food how you want, and when you want. Not only will it time the food when it is cooking to ensure the perfect cooking time, but it will also allow you to delay the cooking of your food.
You can set a delay for up to 24 hours so that you can go to work and come home to a freshly cooked meal, or set it overnight to have the perfect bowl of oatmeal ready as soon as you rise.
The other small touches make this a pressure cooker worth having. There is a rice paddle and measuring cup for exact rice cooking. The handle and locking feature makes this pressure cooker safe to transport when the internal pressure is high. The stainless steel lid and handle also stay cool when the internal temperature is high.
You do not have to worry about being burned when you touch this pressure cooker. The interior and accessories are also completely dishwasher safe, so you do not have to worry about the clean up as you are enjoying your delicious meal.
This is a great pressure cooker for a couple who want to experiment with different types of cooking. If you cook a lot of rice, this is the pressure cooker for you.
- Lots of accessories
- Easy to use
- Dishwasher safe
- Saves power and time
- Small capacity
- No recipe book
3. Homeleader Pressure Cooker – Best for Steaming
This multi-function pressure cooker comes with everything you need to cook everything you could ever eat. Not only can you use this appliance as a pressure cooker, but you can also use it to steam your food, use as a stockpot, as an oven, and as a food warmer.
The steaming function is excellent for getting tender and crunchy vegetables which are packed with vitamins and nutrients.
There are 12 smart programs pre-programmed into this pressure cooker to help you achieve the best results from conventional foods. These are classic functions for meat, vegetables, rice, and soups, along with more obscure and interesting features such as cake and pressure cooking.
This is a pressure cooker which you can experiment with and achieve amazing results with foods you have never tried to cook before.
The interior of this pressure cooker has been tested to ensure that all food safety standards are met. The stainless steel interior is completely safe for all foods, so you do not have to worry about your food becoming contaminated.
You also do not need to worry about the cleanup. The interior is completely dishwasher safe, taking the hassle out of your cleanup. You can also relax as far as safety is concerned. The lid on this pressure cooker will not open when there is any pressure inside. There is no chance of the interior become dangerous and forcing the lid open.
This is a great pressure cooker for a family who wants to try new things. You can cook an interesting variety of food with this pressure cooker.
- Easy to use
- Pre-programmed functions
- Dishwasher safe
- Great for experimentation
- Large capacity
- Can be complicated to use
4. Gtime Electric Pressure Cooker – Best for Sous Vide
This is a huge pressure cooker which has a lot of versatility.
The large capacity means that it is perfect for a large family or large-scale cooking. It is great for batch cooking and then freezing. You can pack in the nutrients and minerals and then freeze the food to lock in the freshness.
Your cooking will be 70% faster than traditional cooking. You can take advantage of the power and time savings to create an easier life for you and more time with your friends and family.
There are 18 different types of cooking you can do with this pressure cooker. You can take advantage of sous vide cooking to elevate your dinner parties with friends really.
You have all the functionality to create pressure cooking and slow cooker classics, such as soups, stews, meats, rice, vegetables, and beans, along with having the feature at your disposal to sauté and bake your food, make yogurt and have fondue.
We like the slow-cook and keep warm functions. Both offer you the flexibility to craft your meal to perfection and at the time you want it. You can use your pressure cooker as a slow cooker to slow-cook your food or set the timer to have your food ready when you want and keep it warm until you are ready.
The glass lid on this pressure cooker lets you see your food as it is cooking. There is also a steam rack for cooking vegetables or meat on; a spoon and measuring cup which will help you to measure and serve your food. There is also a recipe book to aid you in your pressure cooking adventure.
This is a great pressure cooker for large-scale cooking. The versatility of the cooker lets you cook a wide variety of dishes, and the sous vide option will have you feeling like you are a Michelin Star chef.
- Great for professional cooking
- Stainless steel
- One-touch cooking
- Large capacity
- Can be complicated to use
- Higher-quality means a higher price-point
5. Housmile Electric Pressure Cooker – Best for Home Cooking
This pressure cooker will have you feeling like you are in a farmhouse, cooking up some enticing and rustic home-cooked food.
You can cook a meal in as little as ten minutes, but when the food does come out, your friends and family will think that you have spent hours slaving over a hot stove to make the meal. You are able to pressure cook, slow cook, sauté, steam, and much more.
With this pressure cooker, you can create large batches of yogurt and even cook perfect porridge. The latest technology has a microprocessor in your pressure cooker. The microprocessor will monitor the pressure and temperature for you, making tiny adjustments to create the perfect cooking environment for your food.
The technology will also monitor the time your food cooks and take into account the temperature of your food. All of this comes together to make cooking effortless. You can create the perfect food without all the hassle which goes with it.
With this pressure cooker, you get a steamer rack, ladle, rice spoon, measuring cup, instruction and recipe books. You have everything included to get you started with professional dishes.
The interior of the pressure cooker has also been tested to ensure that it meets the highest standards. The stainless steel will not affect the food as it cooks and you can have peace of mind that you are getting the best food possible from this pressure cooker.
A great pressure cooker for creating home-cooked meals for all of the family. The meals which you craft with this pressure cooker will remind people of the food their grandmother used to make (and only in a right way).
- Lots of accessories
- Food safe
- 12-month warranty
- Large capacity
- Can be confusing
- Large footprint
6. Nattork Electric Pressure Cooker – Best for Families
This pressure cooker is large enough to create a great main meal for you and all of your family.
You are sure to please everyone with the food which comes out of this great pressure cooker. There are 13 pre-programmed settings so that you can easily cook food; it is easy to cook beans, rice, meat, and soups with the touch of a single button. You are also able to cook porridge and yogurt for your breakfasts – healthy and delicious.
The aluminum inner pot is non-stick and has been tested to ensure that it is completely food safe. The non-stick coating on the aluminum ensures that your food does not stick to it and that you get all of the delicious food onto the plate instead of wasting any.
The non-stick coating also makes cleanup a breeze. You can remove the pot and throw it in the dishwasher or clean it by hand. The 3-ply bottom on the aluminum pot means that the heat is evenly distributed in the pressure cooker for even cooking throughout the entire interior.
We love food where the nutrient and minerals are locked in. Healthier food means a healthier you, and you need not worry about cooking times getting in the way of your hectic life.
This pressure cooker comes with a timer which can be set to cook your food at a specific time. You can get the kids off to school, set the pressure cooker, go off to work, come home, and enjoy a delicious meal without lifting a finger when you come in the door.
The generous capacity of this pressure cooker is great for families. You can set the pressure cooker to have dinner whenever you want it to be ready.
- Timer with delay function
- Locks in vitamins and minerals
- Can make yogurt
- Easy to clean
- Large capacity
- The display is not intuitive
7. Presto Pressure Cooker – Best for Simple Cooking
This pressure cooker takes the pain out of cooking over a hot stove but does not go over the top with the functionality it offers.
You do not need to worry about reading lengthy instruction manuals and worrying about how to set your pressure cooker. This pressure cooker does what it sets out to do, along with being a slow cooker too.
The lack of functionality is actually a benefit if you are looking for something simple which will cook your food for you. There are some pre-set options to choose from if you are preparing favorite items such as meat, vegetables, and beans.
With a pressure cooker, you want to have the option of cooking food at high and low pressures, and this pressure cooker has precisely that. You can also choose to use the slow cooker setting; you can brown and sauté your food, as well as having the option to keep your food warm.
This is everything you need to get your ingredients to the table for you and your family. The 6-quart capacity will mean that there are leftovers for tomorrow if it is just the two of you, or your whole family can take advantage of the food you cook.
The included rack allows you to steam vegetables without submerging them in any water or you can separate two different foods and still cook them at the same time.
The digital LED display and controls are easy and simple to use, and you will barely even have to look at the instruction guide before you use this pressure cooker.
The perfect pressure cooker for those who want simplicity in their cooking. Pressure cookers keep cooking simple, but this one makes it even more so.
- Dishwasher safe
- Fast cooking times
- Generous capacity
- Small footprint
- Easy to use
- Limited options
- Does not have advanced cooking techniques
8. VonShef Multi-Function Pressure Cooker – Best for Soups & Stews
This is a great pressure cooker for cooking any dish with a lot of liquid in it. If you are looking to whip up a soup, stew, or chili, then this is the pressure cooker for you.
You can throw in all of your ingredients, hit a button, and have a restaurant-quality soup in as little as 25 minutes. The one-button operation is perfect for those who want to cook food without the hassle.
All of your favorite dishes are pre-programmed into the unit to allow for cooking with the touch of one finger. You can also choose between high and low pressures. The other thing we love about this unit is that you can set the timer to cook in 1-minute increments. This gives you complete control over your cooking.
The 6-quart capacity gives you a lot of room to cook up your favorite dishes and have plenty to feed all of your friends and family. The digital display also makes it easy to track how long is left before your food is ready and also allows you to make changes to the cooking time and pressure, or cancel the cooking altogether.
When you are done cooking, the inner pot is removable and dishwasher safe, as are the included accessories. One thing we like about this pressure cooker is the look of it. It will look great on your countertop and has a feel of professionalism about it.
A great pressure cooker for cooking large dishes for family and friends. The handle on the top of the pressure cooker makes it safe and secure to move the cooker when you have soups and stews inside.
An excellent appliance for perfecting the soups you have been cooking all of your life.
- Dishwasher safe
- Professional look
- Large capacityEasy to use
- Large footprint
9. Maxi-Matic Pressure Cooker – Best for Commercial Cooking
This is a pressure cooker which is large enough for the largest families. It would also be great for a catering company or a smaller restaurant.
You can cook large roasts of meat in a fraction of the time that it would take with conventional methods, and the result will be a tender and tasty meat.
The generous 8-quart capacity is perfect for large-scale cooking. You can brown meats, roast them, and the keep them warm for as long as you need to. This can all be done in the same pot.
The 24-delay function allows you to set the pressure cooker to start at any time of the day, giving you the freedom to go and out and do what you need to do without worrying about when the cooking needs to start.
Simply start the timer and let the pressure cooker do the rest. You also have the option of setting the cook timer anywhere between 0-90 minutes, giving you enough of a time range to cook any number of foods.
We love how the brushed stainless steel looks on the exterior of this pressure cooker. There are also a number of accessories which make your cooking experience more comfortable and more precise.
The condensation cup will capture any of the steam which escapes, the steam racks will help you to separate food from the cooker, and the spatula will help you to mix ingredients and serve up food.
The indicator beeping at the end of the cooking cycle also alerts you when the food is done, should you forget about it.
This is one of the best pressure cookers for large-scale cooking. If you have an event or a family function, then this pressure cooker will make cooking a breeze.
- Easy to use
- Dishwasher safe
- Accessories included
- Timer delay
- Large capacity
- Large footprint
- No proven customer service
10. NutriChef Pressure Cooker – Best for Healthy Food
This is an amazing pressure cooker for creating healthy food without the hassle that comes with crafting consistent and delicious food. You will save time, money, power, and more, with this pressure cooker.
With no need to use butter or oil in your cooking, you are already removing unnecessary fats and oils from your dish. Pressure cooking also locks in the flavor of your food, and, not only that, the vitamins, nutrients, and minerals are locked in too.
With a lack of fat and a boost in nutrients, your food will never have been healthier. Your food will also taste better than ever before.
This electric pressure cooker will also save you time and money. With this pressure cooker, you use a lot less energy than with other cooking methods. You will save money on your utility bills.
You will also spend less time worrying about cooking and less time actually cooking. You could reduce your cooking time by up to 70%.
With the ability to cook, bake, steam, boil, and braise, you have so many cooking options with this pressure cooker that you will not know where to start (you may actually spend a lot of your saved time thinking about the next dish you are going to cook in this pressure cooker).
We love the rotary timer on this pressure cooker. Most pressure cookers have digital displays to track the remaining time, but we like the tactile feel of this timer.
It also helps you to see at a glance the cooking times of popular foods and how the cooking times relate to other foods. This is a significant benefit when you need to cook multiple dishes at the same time.
The cooking is easy and so is the cleaning. The inner pot is non-stick, helping food to come off when you are serving it up, making it easy to clean in the dishwasher or by hand. The included accessories also help you to use your pressure cooker before and after cooking.
- Included accessories
- Analog Timer
- Comparable cooking times
- Easy to clean
- Locks in flavor
- Large footprint
Electric Pressure Cooker Buyer’s Guide
Pressure cookers have a reputation for being dangerous.
You cannot help but look at an old pressure cooker and have thought of the thing exploding, the lid bursting off, and the food flying out and all over your kitchen. Yesterday’s pressure cookers are a thing of the past.
Modern pressure cookers are safer than they ever have been. Never again will a lid blow off or food fly across your kitchen. Modern pressure cookers are safe and cook delicious food. But, are they really worth the money?
How Does A Pressure Cooker Work?
A pressure cooker works by using a sealed pot, steam, and a lot of pressure. When food and liquid are sealed inside a pressure cooker and heat is applied, steam is created.
Because that steam has nowhere to escape, it can often be heated to extremely high temperatures. The pressure forces that steam into the food which makes it cook quickly.
The pressure cooker was invented in France in the 1600s, but it was still some time before the technology was there to create a safe cooking environment.
Modern pressure cookers are safe to use. They take advantage of a valve which controls the pressure inside the pot. When the temperature of the pressure cooker rises, steam is formed, and the pressure increases.
When you are cooking your food with traditional methods, the food can be cooked up to the boiling point of water. With a pressure cooker, the temperature of the steam inside can surpass this maximum temperature.
A higher temperature means that you can cook food quicker. Higher pressure also means that the steam is forced into the food. The steam and moisture in the food help it to cook quicker and can soften even the toughest meats or hardest dried beans.
A pressure cooker will cook your food a lot quicker than other cooking methods.
What are the Benefits of an Electric Pressure Cooker?
Electric pressure cookers have been designed to make your life easier.
There are many practical benefits to a modern pressure cooker, and you may find that a pressure cooker will replace many of the appliances in your kitchen. Let’s look at some of the benefits of a pressure cooker.
Time and Money
Time is where a pressure cooker is set apart from the rest of your kitchen appliances. Pressure cooking is one of the fastest and easier cooking methods which you will come across.
You can save up to 70% of the cooking time for almost any food. You can cook an entire chicken in around 15 minutes or a crazy risotto in around 10. A pressure cooker pressurizes the cooking of your food to cut down on the cooking time.
By cooking your food with super-hot steam (above boiling temperature), food is cooked quicker than conventional methods.
The quicker cooking time also means that less energy is required to cook that food. If you compare pressure cooking to preparing your food on the stove, then there is a 40% saving on energy.
When you compare pressure cooking to a conventional oven, you can save up to 75% in energy costs; less energy means less money. Electric pressure cooking will save you money on your utility bills.
Usually, when you boil or steam your food, some of the vitamins and minerals are lost to the water. When you cook food under pressure, you use water, but you use a lot less water than conventional cooking methods.
There is also less contact with the air as everything is sealed inside the pressure cooker. Less oxidization means fewer nutrients are lost to the air. With the nutrients, vitamins, and minerals locked in, the end result is healthier food.
The pressure cooker environment also means tastier food. Less evaporation means that the moisture is locked in, and the flavor is locked in too. When you cook meats, they will come out sweet and juicy. The natural flavors of the food are looked in.
Pressure cooking is also great for killing micro-organisms in your food. The heat will kill them off and get rid of any bacteria and viruses. Killing them off is only going to make your food healthier.
A pressure cooker can be used to replace many cooking appliances. You can roast joints of meat that you would usually roast in the oven. You can cook anything in a pressure cooker which you would normally cook on the stove.
Anything you can cook in a pot or a pan, you can cook in a pressure cooker. It is capable of cooking a three-course meal without needing all the fuss and equipment which is usually required. You can cook anything from starter to dessert.
When you cook in an oven, your entire kitchen is warmed. On a hot day, this can mean your kitchen is heating up until it becomes unbearable.
When you cook in a pressure cooker, the heat is locked inside the pressure cooker instead of being released into the air. You can cook the same food as you would in the oven without having all of the heat in your house.
This also means that the smells are not released too. There are many times where delicious smells can be a great thing to have around your home, but there are other times when you do not want the aroma permeating.
A pressure cooker is a real space saver. It does not take up much room and can replace a lot of appliances. It saves you from having to use your oven or stove top.
Types of Pressure Cookers
Electric pressure cookers are relatively new on the market.
Stovetop pressure cookers have been around for a lot longer, but are slowly being replaced by the electronic versions. So why should you choose an electric pressure cooker over a stovetop model?
Electric vs. Stovetop
With an electric pressure cooker, you have a built-in heating mechanism.
A stovetop pressure cooker is designed to sit on the top of your stove, and the heat is regulated manually by setting your stove to the desired temperature.
The power needed to run the internal heating element of an electric pressure cooker is a lot less than what you need to run a stove which will save you more money.
An electric pressure cooker also has a built-in timer. This allows you to start cooking a meal with a timer set. You do not have to go back to the pressure cooker to check if the food is done. An electric cooker will monitor the heat and the pressure for you.
Once you have set it, you do not need to make any of the fine tunings which you may have to make with a stovetop pressure cooker. When your food is done cooking, an electron pressure cooker will also keep your food warm for you.
Ease of Use and Cleanup
You are buying an electric pressure cooker because they are easy to use, so they should be easy to use, right?
Well, not all pressure cookers are created equal, but that does not mean that you should not consider all levels of pressure cooker. At their most basic, pressure cookers are extremely easy to use.
Throw in your ingredients, press a button or two, and the food is cooked for you a lot faster than you would believe. The pressure cooker will cook your food at the desired temperature and pressure for a set amount of time. When the food is done, it will often keep that food warm for you.
As you move up from the simplest electric pressure cookers to the more feature-laden ones, they do become a little more complicated to use. There are more buttons, more functions, and more ways to cook.
Premium pressure cookers can act as slow cookers, warmers, yogurt makers, and more. If you only want a simple pressure cooker, or you are not tech savvy, then we would recommend starting out with something simple.
Choose a pressure cooker which will cook your food under pressure, and you cannot go wrong.
Pressure cookers also benefit from their ease of cleaning. The outside is very easy to clean. All you need to do is wipe any dirt or grime from the outside of the unit. This can be done with a damp cloth and some soap if needed.
Most electric pressure cookers come with an internal pot which can be removed. This inner pot can usually be cleaned in the dishwasher or by hand. You do not need to do anything complicated to clean an electric pressure cooker, but the more features and accessories you have, the more you will have to do to clean your pressure cooker.
What To Look For In An Electric Pressure Cooker
This is the most important consideration for many people, and we would have to agree.
You should never spend more than you can afford, but you should also never buy the cheapest option just because it is the most affordable option. When you set out to buy an electric pressure cooker, you should decide on a budget for this appliance.
Generally, the more you spend, the better your pressure cooker will be. We recommend investing in a high-quality pressure cooker which will last you for a long time before breaking down.
A more expensive pressure cooker will often save you money in the long run.; if you have to replace parts often on a cheap pressure cooker or replace the pressure cooker entirely, then it is not worth the initial savings.
The footprint of your electric pressure cooker will depend a lot on how you are going to be using your pressure cooker.
If you are going to be using it as the primary cooking appliance, then you are going to have it out on your counter most of the time. A long as you have enough room for your pressure cooker, then you can have it sitting out.
If you are only going to use your pressure cooker occasionally, you want it to be small enough to be put into storage when you are not using it.
Pressure cookers do come part, but not in a way that reduces their physical footprint. When you are buying a pressure cooker, you shod be aware that they are appliances. Make sure that you have enough space to safely store your pressure cooker when it is not in use.
Pressure cooking is all about pressure.
You can find pressure cookers in various PSI ranges, from 9-15 PSI. When you are looking at recipes, you may find that there is a suggested PSI. The higher the PSI, the shorter the cooking time. Many recipes will call for 15 PSI.
If your pressure cooker is not around 15 PSI, then you may have to add more cooking time. If your PSI is around 9, then add 20% to the cooking time. If it is around 13, then add 10% to the cookie time.
The higher the PSI, the faster you will be able to cook. You will also be able to cook bulkier food more efficiently with a higher PSI. We recommend trying to find an electric pressure cooker with as close to 15 PSI as possible.
The capacity of your electric pressure cooker is an important consideration.
With a large pressure cooker, you can cook a significant amount of food, but also a small amount if you wish; with a small pressure cooker, you can only cook a small amount of food.
That being said, you do not want to buy a large pressure cooker just for the sake of it; it will take up more space and cost more to run. You should also bear in mind that the size of the cooker does not translate to the capacity.
When you are cooking inside it, you will be using around two-thirds of the pot size so that liquid does not block the steam valve.
Pressure cookers under 5 liters in capacity are great for singles to couples. This size of pressure cooker will be large enough to cook a meal for two people. It will also be big enough to cook a course for a small family, but we would not recommend it for cooking main courses for a small family.
5-7 liters is an ideal size for a pressure cooker for a family of four. This size pressure cooker will be big enough to cook the main course for an average family. It is also not too bulky so will not take up too much room in a kitchen or storage cupboard.
If you are part of a large family, a family with 6 people or more, then look for a pressure cooker with a capacity of 7.5-10 liters. This size of pressure cooker will cook up enough food for 6 people or more. It is a great size for large families and friend groups. It is so also great for cooking large batches of food to freeze.
The largest capacity pressure cookers are over 10 liters in size. This size of pressure cooker is more for commercial kitchens than family cooking. They are great for catering and also for cooking up large meals to freeze. They can also be used in canning processes to seal food, such as pickled foods, in cans or jars.
Safety Features to Look For
If you have a grandmother or another relative who has used a pressure cooker years ago, then you may have heard stories about explosions of food and how pressure cooking was an art form, a dangerous one, but an art form all the same.
With a modern pressure cooker, you need not worry about compromising your safety in the kitchen. There are many safety features which are included in electric pressure cookers. Here are some which you should look for.
All modern electric pressure cookers have a locking system which locks the lid to the body of the pressure cooker. A safety feature of these systems is that they only unlock when the pressure inside is at a safe level.
If you open the lid of your pressure cooker when the pressure is too high, then the steam and food inside are going to be released too quickly, and the food is going to go everywhere.
The strongest lids will not let the pressure escape when the pressure cooker is cooking your food. They will also stay shut when the pressure is too high.
With a right locking lid, you can pick up your pressure cooker by the handle on the top without worrying about the cover being forced open.
Pressure Release Valves
It is integral to all pressure cookers that there is a way for the steam to escape so that the pressure inside is consistently maintained. When the pressure is low, these valves will seal shut.
If the pressure gets too high, then the valve will open and let out some of the steam. This ensures that the pressure cooker does not get too pressurized and blows its lid, so to speak.
There are two types of valves used on electric pressure cookers: spring-loaded valves and jiggle top valves.
Spring-loaded valves are great for cooking around the boiling point of water. They are effective in releasing pressure from your pressure cooker without decreasing the temperature of the interior.
They are simple in their design which makes them useful and less likely to break down. When the pressure of the interior of your pressure cooker gets too high, the valve will pop up and release some of the pressure.
Jiggle top valves work well even if the air from the interior of your pressure cooker has been removed entirely. Jiggle top valves rock when the pressure gets too high. This helps them to release some of the pressure inside, along with any excess steam.
Pop-up indicators are a great way to see the pressure inside of your pressure cooker, and do not fail or become corrupted like an electronic display, with an electronic sensor, would.
They insert into your pressure cooker and are weighted on one end. As the pressure builds in your pressure cooker, the insert is forced up and out of the pressure cooker. The stem of the indicator has markings on it which can be easily read to see the pressure inside.
The great thing about these indicators is that they are extremely precise and accurate. They also usually feature red warning marks so you can see when the pressure has become too high or when it is too low.
Gasket Release and Secondary Valves
It can be dangerous for the pressure to build too much in your pressure cooker.
For this reason, there are many backup safety features to release the steam and pressure. In most electric pressure cookers, there is a safety valve which will release the steam and pressure inside.
Most electric pressure cookers also have a secondary valve; if the first valve should fail, the second valve will release the pressure. If the second valve gets blocked or is inoperable, the gasket release on the lid will kick in.
When the pressure gets too high, there is a gasket release aperture located just under the lid of your pressure cooker. This gasket will be forced up when the pressure is high. The steam and pressure will be released.
Modes and Features
Replacement parts are not usually included with a pressure cooker warranty.
This is standard with almost every company, so if you can find a company which includes this in their warranty, then you are going to have a great warranty. When you do have a warranty without replacement part cover, you should do a little research to find out if they stock replacement parts.
If the company doesn’t stock replacement parts, then you are going to have a hard time getting your pressure cooker fixed if the parts are damaged.
You are going to be using your pressure cooker for many years. You should try to find a warranty which covers you for as long as possible. Look for an established brand which is more likely to have created a premium product over cheaper alternatives.
You will often find that an established brand will have a higher-quality product which will break down less often. A higher-quality product will have parts which will last a lot longer, and when the pieces do need to be replaced, they will be able to be replaced easily.
Everything is better when it comes with extras, and an electric pressure cooker is no different. Most modern electric pressure cookers will come with more than one function to start with.
Some will come with extra accessories. Some electric pressure cookers will be upgradeable. Most extra features and accessories will cost you extra money, but they can be worth it if they are going to make your life easier and expand your cooking options.
Almost all pressure cookers will come with a timer. A timer allows you to set your pressure cooker for a set duration of time.
With a stovetop pressure cooker, you can set a timer and go back to turn it off. The downside of this is that you have to be where the pressure cooker is to turn it off.
With an electric pressure cooker, you can set the time and then forget about it. When the food is done cooking, the pressure cooker will stop the cooking cycle and may even keep your food warm for you.
With a timer, you can look for features in that timer. It is great to be able to leave your food and go away without having to turn it off, but what about turning the food on to cook?
Some timers have delay functions. This means that you can set your pressure cooker to switch on after a delay in time. You can add your ingredients, set the delay, go to work, and come home to a deathly cooked meal.
When your food is done cooking, your pressure cooker will turn it off for you. This stops the food from overcooking. You do not want mushy and soft vegetables when you can have firm and delicious vegetables.
With a keep warm function, your pressure cooker will keep your food warm for you without cooking the food more. This is a great function if you do not know the exact time you will be back in the house.
You can also set this function if you are disturbed as you are about to serve the food. Perhaps a friend has come to the door just as you were about to eat dinner; you can now keep your food warm until you are ready to eat.
Many pressure cookers have one set PSI. If you want more control over the pressure of your cooking, then you can find electric pressure cookers which will allow you to set the cooker to various pressures depending on the food you are cooking.
Many pressure cookers double as multi-cookers. If you want versatility in your pressure cooker, then look for a pressure cooker which also has functions for slow cooking, steaming, rice cooking, sautéing, browning, and even yogurt making.
An electric pressure cooker is an excellent investment for the power and time you will save, but the more functionality your pressure cooker has, the more value you will get for your money.
Stainless Steel Steamer Insert
If you want to steam food, without that food being in the water, then a steaming insert is the way to go. With an insert, your vegetables will be firm and tender without them boiling in water.
When you think about using a pressure cooker, you do not often think about cakes, but they are perfect for baking cakes if you have the right insert for them.
With a springform pan insert, you can make a perfect cheesecake in an electric pressure cooker. You can even use the pan to make dishes such as lasagna. If you buy a Bundt pan insert, then you can also make Bundt cakes in your pressure cooker.
When your pressure cooker is cooking, steam will be released from time to time. This steam can be released into your kitchen, but the extra moisture can be damaging.
A steam condensation collector will lock to the side of your pressure cooker and will collect the steam as it is released.
Bonus: Electric Pressure Cooker Tips
Timing is Rverything
Your pressure cooker will likely come with a recipe book to get you started. Follow the instructions carefully for your pressure cooker, and you will have delicious tasting food.
There is a multitude of recipes out there on the internet, so you should never run out of food to try, but you should pay attention to the PSI.
If the recipe is for a higher PSI than your electric pressure cooker, then you should add on a few more minutes to the cooking time.
If you open your pressure cooker and find that the food is not quite done, then close it up, bring it back up to the desired pressure and cook for a few more minutes.
Be Careful with the Liquid
Your pressure cooker is using steam to cook your food and does need a minimum amount of liquid to cook the food correctly. You should refer to your user guide to ensure that you are using the correct amount of liquid or your food will not cook properly.
You should also remember that you are cooking with steam, so you do not need to use as much liquid as with other cooking methods. There is also no evaporation when compared to a cooking method such as boiling. For that reason, you need less water to cook with.
Do Not Open Until Depressurized
Most modern electric pressure cookers make it impossible to open your pressure cooker when the pressure is too high.
Never try to open your pressure cooker when the cooker is in use or when the pressure is higher than the external pressure. If the pressure does not release after cooking, then refer to your user guide for instructions on how to manually release the pressure of the pot.
Do Not Overfill
Your pressure cooker will have a capacity in liters, but this is not how much food you can cook. You should not fill your pressure cooker more than two-thirds full, or you risk food and liquid blocking your steam valve.
You shod also be aware that different sizes of food will take different times to cook. If you want to step potatoes in your electric pressure cooker, then you should cut those potatoes to the same size.
You can also cook some food partially in your pressure cooker before stopping the cooking, adding more ingredients, and starting the cooking again.
The best pressure cooker will help you to create delicious food in a fraction of the time it would take with an oven or stovetop. Not only will it save you time, but it will save you money too.
Not only will it also save you money, but it will lock in the nutrients to give you the healthiest food you have ever eaten. Well, you get the picture; there are numerous reasons why you should get an electric pressure cooker.
There is a lot of information out there. Some are good, and some are bad.
We have taken it all and condensed it into the information which you need to know. Once you have got through our guide, you will be equipped with all the information you need to choose the perfect pressure cooker for you.
All that is left to do is go buy your pressure cooker and start creating food the way to should be.